A nationwide voting committee selected Loyola middle attacker Jeff Jendryk, Long Beach State middle attacker Amir Lugo-Rodriguez and Ball State middle attacker Matt Walsh as finalists for the annual Ryan Millar Award.
The Ryan Millar Award, which is named after the former BYU All-American and U.S. Olympian, is presented to the nation’s best middle attacker in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season.
Jendryk, the runner-up for the 2016 Ryan Millar Award, finished the regular season with a nation-best .445 attack percentage and had double-digit kills in eight matches. The All-MIVA selection also was sixth in the nation with a 1.19 blocks per game average, including having season-high 10 blocks in a sweep against No. 11 Ball State in February.
Lugo-Rodriguez led the MPSF and was second in the nation with a 1.26 blocks per game average. He also had at least a .500 attack percentage in 17 matches as he earned all-conference honors and helped No. 1/1 Long Beach State win a share of the MPSF regular season title.
Walsh was the only player to be in the nation’s top five for both blocks and offense efficiency as he had a .441 attack percentage and averaged 1.21 blocks per game. The All-MIVA junior also had a career-high 25 aces in the regular season and multiple aces in eight matches.
The voting committee for the Ryan Millar Award was comprised of about 25 college men’s volleyball head coaches and volleyball reporters from around the nation.
The top three vote-getters were named finalists for the Ryan Millar Award. The winner of the Ryan Millar Award and the total voting results will be announced Friday, April 28.
This is the second year of the Ryan Millar Award, which is one of several end of season awards presented by Off the Block. Among the other national awards includes the Lloy Ball Award to the nation’s top setter, the Bryan Ivie Award to the nation’s top opposite, the Karch Kiraly Award to the nation’s top outside attacker and the Erik Shoji Award to the nation’s top libero.
Off the Block is a national award winning website that launched in 2011 and is the nation’s leaders in college men’s volleyball coverage.
RYAN MILLAR AWARD FINALISTS
Jeff Jendryk, Loyola
Amir Lugo-Rodriguez, Long Beach State
Matt Walsh, Ball State